King Jazzy springs his 'trap'Friday, June 04, 2021
BY HOWARD CAMPBELL
Though born in New York, King Jazzy lived long enough in Jamaica to earn his dancehall stripes. According to the deejay/rapper, “I have my fair share of tin boom and flour dumpling coursing through my veins.”
His urban influences can be heard (and seen) on Trap Betty Baby, a song he dedicates to the Jamaican ghetto queen. A blend of rap and dancehall, part of the track's promotion is a graphic video which was partially filmed in Tawes Meadows, a tough community in Spanish Town.
“The concept of Trap Betty Baby is to cross a love song with a trap song, to mix the street life with romance and to recognise the beauty of all women including the ghetto girls that inspired this one,” he explained in an interview with the Jamaica Observer's Splash. “It may be a little slack and racy but it's real.”
King Jazzy (given name Benjamin Lamberti) and motorcitymelo co-produced Trap Betty Baby for the Electric Sticky music label. It is the follow-up to Valentine, a ballad he released in February.
Unlike other white deejays such as Dominic out of the United Kingdom and Snow, a Canadian, King Jazzy experienced Jamaica before launching his music career.
Of Italian heritage, he moved to this country when he was seven years old after his mother married a Jamaican. He attended Oracabessa Primary School in St Mary and Iona Preparatory School in St Ann; his musical education came from listening to Dennis Brown, Junior Reid, Half Pint, Capleton, Sizzla, Buju Banton, and Vybz Kartel.
King Jazzy also has an appreciation for rap kingpins, The Notorious Big and Tupac Shakur, as well as Afrobeats star Burma Boy.
For the past 15 years, he has produced dancehall/reggae, hip hop, electronica and 'Afropop' songs by artistes from Jamaica and Detroit where he divides his time. King Jazzy has no doubt which genre carries the most influence.
“I believe dancehall/reggae is where the pebble drops for so much music worldwide. We are the trendsetters, it's true,” he said.